Rapid sand filtration is a conventional biotechnological process used to
treat groundwater for drinking water preparation. The microbiome consists of
several chemolithoautotrophic microbial groups, including methane, sulfide,
ammonium, iron and manganese oxidizers. Recently, a new pathway was discovered
in these sandfilters – the complete ammonia oxidizers (comammox), oxidizing
ammonia all the way to nitrate, which previously was considered to be a
two-step process catalysed by two distinct groups of microorganisms. However,
although comammox bacteria are abundant in the sandfilters, an important
question remain: Are these bacteria active?
This project will optimize extraction of RNA in samples from various
waterworks in the Copenhagen area for metatranscriptomic analyses, used to quantify
the genetic activity of the whole microbial community in these biofilters.